Thursday, April 28, 2011

What Would Debbie Do? My kitchen with handpainted tiles

The other day I was checking out some Italian villas based on Willow Decor's recommendation and I was completely struck with the colorful tiles, especially those on the floor.  Maybe it's the wallpapered ceiling in my powder room, but lately I'm drawn to patterns on places other than walls.  And these tiles got me thinking about my kitchen.  If I put down some fabulously colored tiles on the floor, what sort of cabinets would I then need?  And so on. 

So here's What Would Debbie Do with hand painted floor tiles in my current kitchen!

The tile I picked out is pretty dramatic and I'd want it in a big size, like 1' squares, to be even more dramatic.  I looked at ones with more white, but I just kept coming back to this pattern with the different shades of blue and touches of black.  It just seemed more versatile.  Thinkn about it - yellow gingham would sweeten things up, black would add glamor, white would brighten, a random color like coral would make it even more eclectic, etc.  Anyway, back to my design.

I HAD to go with a copper hood.  I've been a little bit obsessed with them since finding this picture and put them in every dream kitchen.  I like this one because it's a little darker so mixing it up with fixtures and hardware in other finishes will be contrasting, not clashing.

The combination of the copper hood and dramatic tile just seemed to call out for stained cabinets instead of the white ones I usually pick out for my dream kitchen.  I like these because they're a little more rustic looking.  I would do the top cabinets all with glass fronts to lighten things up a bit (and paint the backs creamy white or mustard-y yellow - not sure) and they would go alllllllll they way to the ceiling with a very, very simple moulding at the top.  Very simple hardware as well, probably oiled bronze or black to blend in with the wood. 

Below would be solid fronts and I would spend gobs of time designing these so there are pull-out shelves for all my various cook and bakeware.  The back wall of my kitchen would also get some custom cabinets on the bottom and then coordinating open shelves up top, possibly with a copper pot rack.  Or maybe the shelves would have adjustable pegs to hold up my oversized platters.

With so much going on with the floor, the backsplash needs to be simple, but I didn't want to do just paint and thought white subway tile would be too stark.  And then I found this blue-gray glass subway tile from  So pretty!  And at least on my computer monitor, it looks to be the same shade as one of the blues in the floor tiles.  Of course, if this were real life, I'd order samples of both to be sure, but we're dreaming here so I can make all sorts of assumptions.

And I like the color coordination, but with the dark cabinets and the dark floor and the dark backsplash (and I'm thinking a similar blue-gray on the ceiling), something's gotta be light so I made it my counters.  My sister has quartz counters and loves them so I went with the same.  The color of these is called champagne, which is my favorite type of wine.  They're made to resemble marble and actually have bits of marble in them.  They also have bits of gold, which pulls in the copper hood.  And then the sandy color is enough of a contrast to chrome and white.

Another mandatory part of all of my dream kitchens is the Lombard light from Rejuvenation.  I would get two of them so there would be plenty of light and put them both on dimmers.  I like laboratory lighting when I'm cooking, but would love to be able to have mood lighting during a party when folks are in and out of the kitchen.  Because no matter how much you put things out in the living room or how teeny tiny your kithen is, people always gather there.  And with tile like this?  The party will ALWAYS be on in the kitchen.  And I like it.

I didn't pick out the other parts of the kitchen, but picture a mammoth stainless undermount sink with a curved chrome faucet.  I'll keep my black stove because it was a gift and thus is very special to me.  Plus I think the black would fade into the background instead of competing for spotlight with the floor the way stainless would.  I would replace my fridge and dishwasher with updated versions, also in black.  A bamboo Roman shade on the window that's a lighter and more golden than the cabinets.  And a few more pieces of Le Crueset in flame to add to what I have to jazz things up even more. Because, you know, I'm all about a jazzy kitchen.

What do you think?

side note: the only downside to this kitchen is that I would have to change the living room color. Even a dustier shade of turquoise, like I want anyway, would still be too much blue for me. And while something neutral like a paperbag khaki would be pretty, I can't imagine me living in that much neutral. So that's something else to think about.  Later.


April said...


Allie (Wardrobe Oxygen) said...

Oh I love it! And great collage! :)